Confusion Reigns Around Hiring for Cultural Fit

"Employers agree cultural fit is important - but only 1 in 10 are happy with how they’re doing it"

New research from recruitment technology experts ThriveMap shows that organisations have tuned in to the need to understand their company culture, especially when hiring new employees, but are struggling to know the best way to go about it.

A huge 96% of HR leaders said that recruiting for cultural fit was crucial, but only 11% said they are satisfied with how they hire for it. The fact that 89% said that they needed to improve their process shows that employers want more help in this area.

Worryingly, just over three quarters (77%) of the companies questioned admitted to using just gut feel when assessing candidates in their recruitment process, leaving themselves dangerously exposed. Not only does this mean they are likely to have large inconsistencies from department to department in their hiring process, it also leaves them open to bias, potentially overlooking the perfect candidate. At a time when the spotlight is on organisations to embrace more diversity in the workplace, lacking an objective assessment of candidates is woefully short-sighted.

Of those who said that they were taking steps to measure for cultural fit when recruiting, 92% said they use targeted interview questions, 62% specific competency questions and 15% said to try and reduce bias they get multiple people to interview candidates. These can all help to some extent, but none of them will tackle how a candidate works in practice. Objective measures taken to understand the current culture of the team and analyse their working style and preferences will help organisations be more effective in finding the right candidates who have not only the experience but will gel with how their new team operates.

Chris Platts, CEO of ThriveMap says: “Hiring the wrong candidate can waste a huge amount of time and money and have a detrimental effect on morale and productivity. 89% of hiring failures are down to cultural reasons, rather than a capability to do the job. Finding a smarter way to hire candidates, who not only have the right skills but also work in a complementary way to their team could make a significant difference to a company’s bottom line. We see cultural fit not as a test of personality but a measure of how well people will work with and for each other.”

Dr Stephanie Cook, Psychologist and Chief Science Officer for ThriveMap says “The role of HR is changing. The rise of social media alongside peer-to-peer review sites like Glassdoor, mean that employers no longer have complete control over their brand and need to find alternative ways to present themselves as an attractive prospect to new employees. Those employees in turn want to find working environments that fit not just their skills but also how they like to work. Employers that show that they are both conscious of their culture and taking active steps to measure and improve it, will be the winners in the war for talent now and in the future.”

To find out more about ThriveMap and the services that they can offer businesses, please click here.